Massachusetts: Record-Breaking $158.7 Million in Marijuana Sold in December, $1.8 Billion For 2023

There was more legal marijuana sold in December in Massachusetts than any month prior.

There was $158.7 million worth of marijuana sold legally in December, narrowly breaking the previous monthly record of $158.3 million sold in August.

According to data compiled and released by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission, $140.1 million of the marijuana sold in December was recreational marijuana, while medical marijuana sales reached $18.6 million.
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Missouri: $123 Million in Legal Marijuana Sold in December, $1.3 Billion for 2023

December marijuana sales fell just short of the monthly record set earlier this year.

December marked the 10th straight month that legal marijuana sales surpassed $100 million in Missouri. In total there was $123.3 million worth of marijuana sold, coming within $3 million of the record-setting $126 million sold in March. $106.5 million of the marijuana sold in December was purchased by recreational consumers, while $16.8 million was purchased by medical marijuana patients.

Sales for all of 2023 reached $1.3 billion, resulting in over $100 million in tax revenue for the state. All-time sales for legal marijuana is now just shy of $2 billion.
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National Poll Shows President Biden’s Favorability Rating Will Jump 11% Among Likely Voters if Marijuana is Rescheduled

A new nationwide poll finds that a strong majority of American voters support rescheduling marijuana, and if the government does so this year it will give President Biden a large favorability jump.

Conducted by Lake Research Partners, the poll found that 58% of likely voters support rescheduling marijuana, moving it from its current Schedule I status to Schedule III. Just 19% oppose this move, which would legalize medical marijuana for prescription use nationwide while providing medical marijuana patients and businesses with a plethora of legal protections.

Rescheduling marijuana was supported by a majority of all age groups and political affiliations, but was unsurprisingly highest among those aged 18 to 25 with 65% in support and just 14% opposed.
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California Committee Unanimously Approves Psychedlics Bill

Two committees in the California Assembly have given approval to a bill to establish a psychedelics work group to prepare the state for legalization.

Psilocybin (“magic”) mushrooms.

The Assembly Appropriations Committee voted 11 to 0 today to pass Assembly Bill 941, filed by Assemblymember Mari Waldron (R). The committee’s vote comes nine days after it was approved, also unanimously, through the Assembly Health Committee, and a little over three months after Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed a bill that would have legalized certain psychedelics including psilocybin, DMT and ibogaine.

This bill “would require the California Health and Human Services Agency to convene a workgroup to study and make recommendations on the establishment of a framework governing psychedelic-assisted therapy, as defined.”
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Hawaii Bill to Decriminalize Marijuana Passed Through First Reading in House of Representatives

Legislation to decriminalize the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana has been passed through its initial reading in the Hawaii House of Representatives.

House Bill 1596 was filed Wednesday by State Representative David Tarnas along with a coalition of 11 other lawmakers. Yesterday the measure “passed First Reading”, with it needing to be passed through two additional readings before it can be sent to the Hawaii Senate.

In 2019 lawmakers in Hawaii passed a limited marijuana decriminalization law that removed criminal penalties for possessing up to three grams of marijuana, making it at most an $125 ticket. House Bill 1596 would increase the three gram limit to be 28 grams (one ounce), and it would reduce the ticket to just $25.
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Washington Senate Votes Unanimously to Allow the Sale of Cannabis Waste

Legislation that would allow licensed cannabis producers and processor “to sell specified solid waste generated during cannabis production or processing under certain conditions” has been passed by Washington’s full Senate.

Senate Bill 5376 was approved through the Senate yesterday in a unanimous 48 to 0 vote. The measure was filed by Senator Derek Stanford (D) and is cosponsored by Senators Anna Rivers (R), Karen Keiser (D), Rebecca Saldana (D) and Claire Wilson (D).

The measure states that “A licensed cannabis producer and a licensed cannabis processor may sell cannabis waste to a person not licensed by LCB if:
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Federal Bill to Deschedule Marijuana Likely the Prime Vehicle for Marijuana Reform if Democrats Take Back Congress

Legislation to fully deschedule marijuana while allowing expungements has 82 sponsors in the House of Representatives, but its chances in the Republican controlled chamber are slim to none – for now.

The Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act was filed in September with five sponsors. In the four months since being filed, 77 additional lawmakers have signed on as cosponsors, bringing the total to 82. This represents nearly 20% of the entire 435-member House of Representatives. However, all of the measure’s cosponsors are Democrats, providing a slim outlook in the near future in a chamber that’s controlled by Republicans.

This outlook could change by the end of the year, given every member of the House is up for reelection this November, and polling shows that there’s a reasonable chance the Democrats could take back majority control of the House of Representatives. If they were to do so, the sheer number of Democrats sponsoring the MORE Act indicate that it could be the primary vehicle for reforming marijuana laws, something many Democrat leaders have vowed to fight for.
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American Nurses Association Applauds Department of Health’s Recommendation to Reschedule Marijuana

The American Nurses Association has issued a press release applauding the US Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) recommendation to the DEA that it move marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act.

The American Nurses Association (ANA), formed in 1896 and representing over five million registered nurses across the United States, calls the recommendation “a positive step toward developing an evidence-based approach for marijuana and related-cannabinoids use in disease and symptom management.”

ANA’s press release notes that “HHS’ Assistant Secretary for Health, Rachel L. Levine, M.D, recommended marijuana be reconsidered as a Schedule III drug given it poses lower health risks than other controlled substances and offers possible medical benefits. While the DEA has yet to act on this recommendation, the American Nurses Association (ANA) recognizes this as an accomplishment in realizing the potential for marijuana in health care delivery.”
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New Jersey Officials Approve Rules Allowing Marijuana Consumption Lounges

New Jersey officials have voted unanimously to approve rules that will allow marijuana consumption lounges where marijuana can be legally consumed onsite.

The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission voted 4 to 0 yesterday to approve the proposed rules, which will establish a license for marijuana consumption lounges.

At these locations patrons would be able to purchase and consume marijuana and marijuana products. Consumption lounges would be prohibited from selling food or alcohol, although the commission notes that food could be delivered to the establishment.
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WA Bill Would Put Department of Agriculture in Regulatory and Licensing Control of Legal Marijuana Industry

A House committee in Washington State held a public hearing today on legislation that would transfer cannabis regulatory and licensing activities to the department of agriculture. A potential vote is scheduled for next week.

House Bill 2334 was filed last week by State Representative Kristine Reeves along with four bipartisan cosponsors. Today the House Committee on Regulated Substances & Gaming held a public hearing on the measure, with an executive session and potential vote scheduled for January 25.

If passed into law, the measure would transfer “the responsibilities of the Liquor and Cannabis Board for the regulation and licensing of the production, processing, and testing of cannabis and cannabis products to the Department of Agriculture.
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